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YONKERS, NY, Saturday, June 27, 2015--If your favorite harness racing driver is Dan Dube and your favorite number is four, congratulations and go collect. Dube went "four-th" Saturday night, winning both halves of Yonkers Raceway's soggy $42,000 co-featured Open Handicaps. Great Vintage ($6.20) had nary an anxious moment in the weekly pacing feature, working around a returning P H Supercam (Jason Bartlett) and strolling through fractions of :27.4, :57.1, 1:25.2 and 1:53.2. Great Vintage whipped 19-10 choice P H Supercam--out four weeks prior to this start--by a couple of lengths. Texican N (Eric Carlson) was a three-hole third, with Rock on Moe (Jordan Stratton) and a tough-trip All Bets Off (George Brennan) settling for the remainder. For second choice Great Vintage, a 7-year-old son of American Ideal trained by Jimmy Takter for co-owners his wife, Christina, John Fielding and a pair of Gorans (Anderberg and Falk) it was his third win in five seasonal starts. The exacta paid $19, with the triple returning $62.50. The week's marquee trot saw 11-10 choice Daylon Miracle--in one notch after an inside scratch--duplicate the down-the-road (:28.3, :58.2, 1:27, 1:56.4) MO of Great Vintage. Daylon Miracle held off a second move of outside assignee Luminosity (Brennan) by a length-and-a-half, with Backstreet Hanover (Tyler Buter), Rock of Cashel (Eric Goodell) and Lorenzo Dream (Carlson) rounding out the payees. For Daylon Miracle, a 6-year-old daughter of Pegasus Spur owned (as Allard Racing) and trained by Rene Allard, it was her eighth win in 14 '15 tries. The exacta (two wagering favorites) paid $11.20, the triple returned $47.80 and the superfecta paid $165.50. The Raceway's live season continues Monday night (7:10 PM), Tuesday matinee (1 PM), then Thursday through Saturday (all at 7:10 PM). Note Sunday matinees are done until November. Evening simulcasting accompanies all night programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Friday, June 26, 2015-Cinamony (George Brennan, $11.40) eschewed an early seat and went the distance Friday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's harness racing featured $42,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace. A week after hitting town and matching the track record for her weight class, Cinamony-ordered outside all but one of her eight rivals-was an early third before working around Hot List (Brian Sears) Cinamony, who scorched the Westchester earth to the tune of 1:51.3 last Friday, didn't have to go nearly as fast here (:27, :57, 1:25.1, 1:53). She held off a two-move effort from eight-hole assigned Venus Delight (Jason Bartlett), whipping the slight 2-1 choice by a length-and-a-quarter. Hot List saved the bottom of the ticket, with Jonsie Jones (Tyler Buter) and a first-up For the Ladies N (Eric Carlson) settling for the remainder. For fifth choice Cinamony, a 4-year-old daughter of Art Official co-owned (as Burke Racing) by (trainer) Ron Burke and Weaver Bruscemi, it was her third win in seven seasonal starts. The exacta paid $53, with the triple returning $190.50. The Raceway's live season continues Saturday night (post time 7:10 PM). After that, it's Monday (7:10 PM), a "French-centric" Tuesday (1 PM), then Thursday through Saturday (all at 7:10 PM). Note Sunday matinees are done until November. Evening simulcasting accompanies all night programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, June 20, 2015 - Eight-holers The Real One (drawn) and Luminosity (assigned) both overcame their imposts Saturday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's harness racing co-features. The Real One (Pat Lachance, $37.80) prevailed in the $75,000 Open Handicap Pace, which doubled as the Marvin Kaufman Memorial. It was The Real One catching a live ride behind Flem N Em N (Jason Bartlett, five winners during the 12-race card), then storming by. The Real One defeated a tough-trip-but-resurgent Domethatagain (Dan Dube) by a length-and-a-quarter in 1:52.3, with Flem N Em N, Rock on Moe (Jordan Stratton) and Sky is the Limit (Eric Goodell) settling for the remainder. The 13-10 choice, MrErlean (Tyler Buter), broke early--bothering Domethatagain--and finished sixth. For seventh choice The Real One, a 5-year-old Mach Three gelding trained by his driver for owner Helene Filion, it was his fourth win (second consecutive) in 10 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $238, with the triple returning $889. The race was named for Marvin Kaufman, a longtime standardbred owner and SOA of New York director who passed away in January. He family and friends were on hand to make the winner's circle presentation. Luminosity (George Brennan, $4.90), as the 7-5 fave, made it four win in his last five tries, handily taking the $42,000 marquee trot in 1:55.3. Rock of Cashel (Goodell) was second-up and second home, beaten a length-and-a-half, with Somebody AS (Dube), E R Ellie (Stratton) and Crazy About Pat (Mark MacDonald) completing the cashers. For Luminosity, a 5-year-old Cash Hall gelding co-owned (as Burke Racing) by (trainer) Ron Burke and Weaver Bruscemi, it was his eighth win in 18 '15 tries. The exacta paid $49.20, with the triple returning $212. The Raceway's live season continues Monday night (7:10 PM), Tuesday matinee (1 PM), then Thursday through Saturday (all at 7:10 PM). Note Sunday matinees are done until November. Evening simulcasting accompanies all night programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Friday, June 19, 2015 - Pocket-sitting Tipitina (Jason Bartlett, $10.40) beat pace-setting Jonsie Jones (Tyler Buter) in a two-speed number Friday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's harness racing featured $42,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace. Jonsie Jones made the lead, working around Tipitina before a :27.1 opening quarter-mile. The latter, assigned post position No. 2, has moved past pole-sitting Magic Starlight (George Brennan) at the outset. "Jonsie" found a :55.4 intermission before getting token, first-up advances from Watch Dali (Jordan Stratton). That meek move didn't do much for a second-over 8-5 choice For the Ladies N (Brian Sears) going toward a 1:23.2 three-quarters. Jonsie Jones owned a length-and-a-quarter lead into the lane, but Tipitina edged out and by. The margin was three-quarters of a length in 1:52.2. For the Ladies N rallied into third, while Sir Jillian Z Tam (Pat Lachance) and Magic Starlight settled for the remainder. For third choice Tipitina, a 5-year-old daughter of Rocknroll Hanover owned by Rags to Riches of PA and trained by Mike Forte, it was her sixth win in 17 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $41.60, with the triple returning $177.50. Special Friday props to the invading lass Cinamony (Brennan, $6.50), whose snappy 1:51.3 effort in the $25,000, fifth-race pace matched (Rocklamation, Venus Delight) the track record for 4-year-old mares. Note that since no one took down Friday’s Pick 5, Saturday’s gimmick begins with a carryover of $2,598.52 (50-cent base wager, races 7 through 11).   The Raceway's live season continues Saturday night (post time 7:10 PM). After that, it's Monday (7:10 PM), Tuesday (1 PM), then Thursday through Saturday (all at 7:10 PM). Note Sunday matinees are done until November. Evening simulcasting accompanies all night programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, June 16, 2015 - It's taken two decades, but the International Trot, one of harness racing's elite events, is returning. Yonkers Raceway, which last hosted the spectacle in 1995 (won by Sweden's His Majesty), is bringing it back, complete with a million-dollar purse. It's scheduled for Saturday afternoon, Oct. 10, and the seven-figure purse would be Yonkers' second-ever million-dollar race (2007 Art Rooney Pace, won by Southwind Lynx). The return of the International Trot has been discussed for years, gaining momentum with the success of last season's International Trot Preview. That race, contested at a mile-and-a-quarter, was won by Natural Herbie (Verlin Yoder) in a world-record 2:24.4. Here's what has been finalized so far...  - purse ($1 million)  - distance (1¼ miles)  - horses invited (10) --purse distribution (same as all events), winner-50 percent, 2nd-25 percent, 3rd-12 percent, 4th-8 percent, 5th-5 percent (non-cashing overseas entrants receive $37,500 via a purse supplement, while non-cashing North American entrants receive $10,000). "It's our pleasure to bring back the International Trot," Raceway president Timothy J. Rooney said. "It's been a signature New York race since it debuted at Roosevelt Raceway back in 1959. We took over the race after Roosevelt closed, and it was very well received. "With Yonkers now a major player in the overseas simulcast market, we feel this is the best time to showcase our track to the world by again inviting the best trotters in the world to race here. We have had tremendous cooperation from our horsemen, and all of us are looking forward to it." Again, many of the details of the International Trot (invitees, post time, etc.) have yet to be finalized, so updates shall be sent when available. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Monday, June 15, 2015 - Yonkers Raceway hosted the ladies Monday night, specifically the $166,375 New York Sire Stakes Art Watson Pace for harness racing 3-year-old fillies. Three divisions, at $55,125, $56,125 and $55,125, comprised the event. Band of Angels (Yannick Gingras, $2.80) won both the draw and the endorsement of the electorate, holding sway (:28.3, :57.3, 1:25.4, 1:54.3) in the opening event. She defeated pocket-sitting Bettorhaveanother (Jim Morrill Jr.) by a half-length, with Divine Caroline (Dave Miller) third. For Band of Angels, a daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven owned by W J Donovan and trained by Ron Burke, it was her second (NYSS) win in four seasonal starts. The exacta paid $6.90, with the triple (three wagering favorites in order) returning $15.40. The seven-horse field nearly finished in odds-ascending order, had 27-1 My Little Delight (sixth) been able to get past 37-1 Bosser's Joy for fifth. It was essentially the same MO in the second division, as pole-sitting, odds-on fave Not Before Eight (Scott Zeron, $3.50) was a handy victress. Away third early, she worked around last season's frosh champ, Mosquito Blue Chip (Morrill Jr.), after a :27.4 opening quarter-mile. She then led the lasses for the remainder (:57.2, 1:27, 1:55.1), swatting "Mosquito" by a length-and-a-half. First leader Luck Be a Lindy (Mark MacDonald) was third. For Not Before Eight, a Bettor's Delight miss (unraced at 2) trained by Steve Elliott for owner Ernest Hartman, she's 6-for-9 this season and a perfect 6-for-6 here (first five wins in overnight). The exacta (two choices in order) paid $5.90, with the triple returning $17.40. Zeron and Elliott doubled their sire stakes pleasure in the final NYSS event when Rock Me Gently ($35.20)-from post position No. 6-rallied from third over. They did so after a front-end battle between 7-10 fave Bettor N Better (Gingras), She's Heavenly (George Brennan) and a first-up Hipnumberone (Greg Merton). Those three prompted the pace (:27.1, :55.4, 1:24.4), setting it up for someone to pick 'em off. It was Rock Me Gently and 46-1 rank outsider Nippy W Hanover (John Campbell) closing from the back in a pedestrian (:30.1) final quarter, with the former whipping the latter by a length. Third went to Heavenly Bride (Brian Sears). For sixth choice Rock Me Gently, a daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven co-owned by Old Block Stables, Fra Stable and Kenneth Klein, it was her third win in six seasonal starts. The exacta paid $786, with the triple returning $2,551. The Raceway's five-program-per-week schedule is now back in vogue, with first post every Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM, with Tuesday matinees at 1 (a "French-centric" Tuesday this week). Evening simulcasting accompanies all nighttime programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, June 13, 2015 - Yonkers Raceway-and a healthy harness racing Pick 5-both returned Saturday night. Buoyed by a $25,569.51 carryover and a $60,000 guaranteed pool, $58,454.62 was invested with confidence, leaving a total pool (after takeout) of $69,410.53. The winning combination of 1 (Backstreet Hanover), 1 (Orillia Joe), 4 (Fort Knox), 5 (Rock on Moe) and 6 (Lorenzo Dream) returned $623.75 for every 50-cent winning ticket. Note that to spice things up, the first two races in the sequence were both contested with 10 horses at an added (1¼ miles and 1 1/16 miles, respectively) distance. Saturday's $42,000 tri-features were won by... --(Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace)--Alhambra (catch-driver Jason Bartlett, $10.40) in 1:53.3; --(Open Pace)--The Real One (Pat Lachance, $4.90) in 1:51.2; --Open Handicap Trot-Backstreet Hanover (Tyler Buter, $6) in 2:26 (again, 1¼ miles). Special Saturday props to the Hilltop Helper, a free handicapping sheet compiled and distributed by the Standardbred Owners Association of New York. The certified expert sniffed out the winning Pick 5 numbers with a mere $36 investment. New York Sire Stakes visit downstate Monday night, with Yonkers hosting the $166,375 Art Watson Pace (three divisions) for 3-year-old fillies. The Raceway's five-program-per-week schedule is now back in vogue, with first post every Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:10 PM, with Tuesday matinees at 1 (a "French-centric" Tuesday this week). Evening simulcasting accompanies all nighttime programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, June 9, 2015 - The Belmont Stakes was all well and good, but now the real fun is about to get underway. Yonkers Raceway returns from a harness racing hiatus Saturday night (June 13), with first post at 7:10 PM, and with a first......a $60,000 guaranteed Pick 5 pool. When last we left live racing June 2, the Pick 5 went unclaimed, with a tidy carryover of $25,569.51 all dressed up with no place to go. That carrot figures to attract whole lot of lettuce, so Saturday's "welcome back" wager shall offer a $60,000 guaranteed pool. To add some intrigue, the first two races in the sequence are both added-distance events-a 1¼-mile trot and a 1 1/16 mile-pace, each with 10 starters. If Saturday's dowry goes unclaimed, Monday's (June 15) Pick 5 guaranteed pool would be $100,000. If the current carryover remains in effect until Tuesday (June 16), the guarantee would swell to $125,000. (Note that if the Pick 5 is hit Saturday, Monday's guaranteed pool reverts to the usual $10,000). The Pick 5 is a 50-cent base wager comprised of races 7 through 11 every racing program. It has no consolation payoff, meaning if no one selects all five winners (as was the case the last two programs), the entire pool (minus takeout) moves to the next racing program. Program pages for Saturday's Pick 5 shall be available no later than Thursday afternoon. After Saturday's card, the Raceway's five-program-per-week live schedule returns Monday night, June 15. First post every Monday/Thursday/Friday/Saturday is at 7:10 PM, with Tuesday matinees at 1 PM. Evening simulcasting accompanies all nighttime programs, with afternoon simulcasting available daily. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, June 6, 2015--While American Pharoah hasn't visited Yonkers Raceway--yet--Yonkers Raceway visited American Pharoah. Well, not technically. However, Yonkers' crack track photographer, Mike Lizzi, was at Belmont Park Saturday (clearly, NYRA has to tighten up its lax credential requirements) as "Pharoah" ended the 37-year-old drought and became thoroughbred racing's 12th Triple Crown winner. "Incredible race," Lizzi said. "I'm glad to have witnessed it." What accompanies are a handful of Lizzi's pictures, with more to come in the coming days. A reminder that the Raceway remains on hiatus for live racing and evening simulcasting until next Saturday, June 13. Afternoon simulcasting continues daily. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, June 4, 2015--There are any number of places to watch American Pharoah's quest to complete the elusive Triple Crown, but only one that offers $20 in incentives to do so. Saturday afternoon (June 6), Empire City/Yonkers Raceway is presenting a Belmont Stakes Viewing Party in the Empire Terrace restaurant. The restaurant is located on the casino's second floor, overlooking the racing surface. The party runs from 4-8 PM, with free admission and no RSVP required. Racing fans can enjoy live music with food and drink specials, plus wager on Belmont Park (first post is 11:35 AM) as well other leading simulcast tracks while watching the races on 80" televisions. As an added bonus, guests who bring the newspaper advertisement (running in local papers Friday and Saturday, June 5 and 6) to a promotions booth between 10 AM-6 PM receive a $10 race bet and $10 in casino free play. Post time for the 147th running of the Belmont is 6:50 PM, as American Pharoah tries to end a 37-year Triple Crown drought. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, June 2, 2015--Buoyed by a carryover of $9,051.50, Yonkers Raceway's Tuesday afternoon Pick 5 found a harness racing audience. Some $22,023 of fresh money was thrown into the till, creating a total pool (after takeout) in excess of $25,000. What made the wager even harder to handicap was the entire quintet of races were "French" trots, as in added distance (1¼ miles) and overflow fields (twelve, eleven [after a scratch] and three tens, respectively). The Pick 5 began with the $54,800 Open Handicap Trot, won by Crazy About Pat (Mark MacDonald, $12.20). The former New York Sire stakes champ survived a sustained wide bid to edge Il Mago (Scott Zeron) by a neck in 2:28.1 for the extra acreage. It was 6-5 favorite Luminosity (George Brennan) leading to the lane before fading to third. When the soggy dirt settled, the combination of 1-2-8-10-2 resulted in the Pick 5 pot going unclaimed for the second consecutive card. That means the sumptuous sum of $25,569.51 gets hermetically sealed, then carried over to the next live racing program of Saturday, June 13. Also Tuesday, a Spanish-American Friendship Trot saw the hosts perhaps get a bit too friendly, as the Spaniards finished 1-2-3. The $13,000 event was won by Jaume Riera and Amalfi Coast ($10.40) in 2:00.3. That tandem defeated Movement (Bernardo Cirer) by three-quarters of a length, with Sweet Ben (Miquel Capo) third. As mentioned above, the Raceway now goes on hiatus, with live racing and evening simulcasting returning a week from Saturday. Afternoon simulcasting is offered daily, including this Saturday's (June 6) Belmont Stakes (first post 11:35 AM). Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, May 30, 2015 - After a $7,500 farm buyback (In the Arsenal) won the $300,000 Art Rooney Pace Saturday night, the harness racing bargain-basement theme continued. Purrfect Bags (Vic Kirby, $24.60), who sold for all of $2,000, rolling through the lane, winning Yonkers Raceway's $117,724 Lismore for 3-year-old pacing fillies. Unraced parimtuelly for 52 days and with three qualifiers lead into her local debut, Purrfect Bags-from post No. 5-watched as Totally Rusty (Jason Bartlett), the only $15,000 supplemental entrant into this race, made the lead before a :27.3 opening quarter-mile. That one's wagering partner, Strut My Stuff (Jordan Stratton) was settled, as Sassa Hanover (George Brennan), the 2-5 choice, received her marching orders. "Sass" found the front, setting a spiffy :55.3 half when Bedroomconfessions (Brian Sears) moved from fourth. Purrfect Bags-from post No. 5-was behind her in and out of a 1:24.3 three-quarters. Meanwhile, Sassa Hanover had a couple of lengths turning for home, but Purrfect Bags was launched. She went up and over the leader, widening to win by two lengths in a season's-best 1:52.3. Sassa Hanover was second, with Bedroomconfessions third. Strut My Stuff and Totally Rusty settled for the minor moolah, while Special Package (Dave Miller) was outrun. For third choice Purrfect Bags, a daughter of Roddy's Bags Again owned by JoAnn Looney-King and trained her husband, Jim King Jr., it was her third win in four '15 tries (career 10-for-12, earnings of $205,612). The exacta paid $48.80, with no triple wagering due to the abbreviated number (five) of wagering interests. "(Trainer) Jim) (King Jr.) had her very sharp," Kirby said. "She really only had to pace about an eighth of a mile, and when I asked her, she just put her butt down and took off. "Her last race (statebred final at Dover) was all my fault. I drove her very badly. She has a burst of speed, I'm just glad to have a chance to drive her and tonight was definitely worth the trip." "When I bought her (for $2,000), my husband wasn't very pleased, Ms. King-who won this race a season ago as trainer of Tyra--said. "She the same as Tyra. Both are very fast and both try very hard." Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Friday, May 29, 2015--With three-peating Krispy Apple not in attendance Friday night, it took two harness racing lasses to fill her horseshoes. Alhambra (Brian Sears, $3.30) caught It's a Miracle (Eric Carlson, $2.90) at the wire, dead-heating in Yonkers Raceway's $42,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace. It's a Miracle, leaving from post position No. 5, wound up pocketed to Virgin Mary (Jordan Stratton) through fractions of :27.4, :57.1 and 1:25.4. Meanwhile, pole-assigned Alhambra was tardy both leaving the gate, then catching her ride in the presence of Magic Starlight (George Brennan). She did, however, close ranks in time to move widest and fastest, drawing even with a passing-lane It's Miracle in 1:53.4...a life-best effort for Alhambra. Virgin Mary, who owned length lead into the lane, faded to third, beaten a length-and-quarters. Magic Starlight and Sir Jillian Z Tam (Pat Lachance) completed cashers in a compact grouping, where the eight ladies finished the course separated by less than four lengths. Sharing the salutations were second choice Alhambra, a 5-year-old daughter of Art Major owned by Joshua Schwartz and trained by William Adamczyk, now 5-for-18 this season. For 17-10 fave It's a Miracle, a 5-year-old Always a Virgin miss trained by Jose Godinez for co-owners Blindswitch Racing, Santo Farina, David Sebolsky and Stanley Yoskowitz, it was her fifth win in 20 '15 tries. The exactas paid $17.60 (Alhambra first) and $13.40 (It's a Miracle first), with the triples returning $63 (Alhambra first) and $36.80 ("Miracle" first). The Raceway's live season continues Saturday night (post time 7:10 PM, $300,000 final of Art Rooney Pace and $117,724 Lismore). After that, it's Monday (7:10 PM) and a French-centric Tuesday (1 PM) before hiatus. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, May 28, 2015—Yonkers Raceway’s $300,000 Art Rooney Pace ‎highlights the  season's debut of "Saturday Night at the Races" harness racing series heard on Sirius XM Channel 92. The program, airing from 9:30-11 PM, features major harness stakes from across North America and is co-hosted by Mike Curci and ‎Peter Kleinhans. (Approximate post time for the Rooney is at 8:15 PM, with the race airing on tape delay). . The 25th Rooney, for 3-year old colts and geldings, is led by elimination winners In The Arsenal and Sonofa Sizzle.. The $117,724 Lismore, the companion feature for sophomore fillies, is also included in the broadcast. The Rooney remembers the family patriarch and late Pittsburgh Steelers founder Art Rooney, Sr. The family has owned Yonkers Raceway since 1972.  Empire City Casino at Yonkers Raceway is a sponsor of “Saturday Night at the Races,” with other Yonkers’ stakes races to be featured on the program during throughout the season. (FFI…Bill Finley/Sirius XM Radio, wnfinley@aol.com, Cirillo World/John Cirillo, 914-260-7436, johnnycigarpr@aol.com;) Frank Drucker

Yonkers Raceway's leading harness racing drivers Brian Sears and Jason Bartlett are scheduled to be in midtown Manhattan Thursday, discussing Saturday night's $300,000 Art Rooney Pace for 3-year-old colts and geldings. The event takes places from 11 AM-12:00 Noon at the Nat Sherman Townhouse, 12 E. 42nd Street (between 5th and Madison Avenues), and also includes members of the Rooney family. In the 25th edition of the Rooney, Sears takes a seat behind In the Arsenal from post position No. 2, the stronger half of the even-money, morning line favored entry. In the Arsenal has won eight of 13 career races and more than $430,000 and enters off a victory in one of last weekend's two elimination events. Sears has two Rooney Pace victories to his credit. Bartlett drives Arque Hanover, a troubled fourth in his elim after coming down from Canada. Arque Hanover drew post No. 3 and is listed at 10-1 on the early line. For further information, or to RSVP, please contact John Cirillo (914-260-7436, johnnycigarpr@aol.com) Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, May 26, 2015 -- Favored Winter Blues (Brian Sears, $3.80, part of entry) and bombardier McEver (Mark MacDonald, $91.50) earned the spiffy blankets Tuesday afternoon, winning Yonkers Raceway's pair of harness racing final in the "Jackpot Next Door" Claiming Series. In play early from post position No. 4 in the $69,000 finale for the boys, Winter Blues worked around Auckland Flyer (Eric Carlson), with a :27.2 opening quarter-mile and :56.2 intermission. Ideal Carver (Dan Dube) tried it from fourth towards the 1:24 three-quarters as Winter Blues owned a length-and-three-quarter lead in and out of the final turn. When a $20,000 claimer paces a life-best 1:51.3, he's gonna be tough, and Winter Blues was just that. He held sway over Ideal Carver by three-quarters of a length, with Auckland Flyer third. Someplace Special (Tyler Buter) and Digital Z Tam (George Brennan) came away with the remainder. For Winter Blues, a 10-year-old Astreos gelding co-owned (as Allard Racing) by (trainer) Rene Allard and Kapildeo Singh, it was his fourth win in 16 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $14.40, with the triple returning $36.80. "Just an honest horse who raced very well," Sears said, though he was admittedly stumped when asked how many career marks he's put on 10-year-olds. Tuesday afternoon's $59,000 finale of the 'JND' for the ladies was won by that cone-skimming McEver as the longest shot on the board. ` Leaving from post No. 7 (in one notch after a defection), McEver had no choice but to watch the floor show taking place many lengths in front of her. It was pole-sitting Mikeleh (Dube) refusing to give up the baton, seating a reluctant 1-5 choice (part of entry) Grace Seelster (Brennan) and throwing down the gauntlet (:26.3, :55.4). First-up was Derek Delight (Sears), "Grace's" partner, but she couldn't sustain a bid toward a 1:24.1 three-quarters. So, Mikeleh owned a length-and-three-quarter lead into the lane. Grace Seelster took another shot, but she wasn't the problem. The problem was McEver, who saved every inch of ground, closed relentlessly (:27.4 individual final quarter) and actually won going away. The margin over Mikeleh was a length in a season's-best 1:53. Shawnee Dancer (Scott Zeron) rallied for third, with Grace Seelster and My Ideal Hanover (Buter) rounding out the payees. "I'd rather be lucky than good any day," MacDonald said. "Turning for home, I was hoping to get third, but she kicked it in and Danny's filly and mine were going in opposite directions. His came back to us and mine just took off." For McEver, a 7-year-old daughter of McArdle owned by Susan Oakes and trained by Chris Oakes, it was her fifth win in 14 '15 tries. The exacta paid $453, with the triple returning $4,784. The winner paid $116 to place, with show wagering barred. Frank Drucker

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